RANK Ligand: A transmembrane protein belonging to the tumor necrosis factor superfamily that specifically binds RECEPTOR ACTIVATOR OF NUCLEAR FACTOR-KAPPA B and OSTEOPROTEGERIN. It plays an important role in regulating OSTEOCLAST differentiation and activation.Receptor Activator of Nuclear Factor-kappa B: A tumor necrosis factor receptor family member that is specific for RANK LIGAND and plays a role in bone homeostasis by regulating osteoclastogenesis. It is also expressed on DENDRITIC CELLS where it plays a role in regulating dendritic cell survival. Signaling by the activated receptor occurs through its association with TNF RECEPTOR-ASSOCIATED FACTORS.Osteoprotegerin: A secreted member of the TNF receptor superfamily that negatively regulates osteoclastogenesis. It is a soluble decoy receptor of RANK LIGAND that inhibits both CELL DIFFERENTIATION and function of OSTEOCLASTS by inhibiting the interaction between RANK LIGAND and RECEPTOR ACTIVATOR OF NUCLEAR FACTOR-KAPPA B.Osteoclasts: A large multinuclear cell associated with the BONE RESORPTION. An odontoclast, also called cementoclast, is cytomorphologically the same as an osteoclast and is involved in CEMENTUM resorption.Ligands: A molecule that binds to another molecule, used especially to refer to a small molecule that binds specifically to a larger molecule, e.g., an antigen binding to an antibody, a hormone or neurotransmitter binding to a receptor, or a substrate or allosteric effector binding to an enzyme. Ligands are also molecules that donate or accept a pair of electrons to form a coordinate covalent bond with the central metal atom of a coordination complex. (From Dorland, 27th ed)Receptors, Tumor Necrosis Factor: Cell surface receptors that bind TUMOR NECROSIS FACTORS and trigger changes which influence the behavior of cells.Osteitis Deformans: A disease marked by repeated episodes of increased bone resorption followed by excessive attempts at repair, resulting in weakened, deformed bones of increased mass. The resultant architecture of the bone assumes a mosaic pattern in which the fibers take on a haphazard pattern instead of the normal parallel symmetry.Receptors, Cytoplasmic and Nuclear: Intracellular receptors that can be found in the cytoplasm or in the nucleus. They bind to extracellular signaling molecules that migrate through or are transported across the CELL MEMBRANE. Many members of this class of receptors occur in the cytoplasm and are transported to the CELL NUCLEUS upon ligand-binding where they signal via DNA-binding and transcription regulation. Also included in this category are receptors found on INTRACELLULAR MEMBRANES that act via mechanisms similar to CELL SURFACE RECEPTORS.Membrane Glycoproteins: Glycoproteins found on the membrane or surface of cells.Bone Resorption: Bone loss due to osteoclastic activity.Osteolysis: Dissolution of bone that particularly involves the removal or loss of calcium.Carrier Proteins: Transport proteins that carry specific substances in the blood or across cell membranes.Glycoproteins: Conjugated protein-carbohydrate compounds including mucins, mucoid, and amyloid glycoproteins.Osteoporosis: Reduction of bone mass without alteration in the composition of bone, leading to fractures. Primary osteoporosis can be of two major types: postmenopausal osteoporosis (OSTEOPOROSIS, POSTMENOPAUSAL) and age-related or senile osteoporosis.Bone Neoplasms: Tumors or cancer located in bone tissue or specific BONES.Osteoblasts: Bone-forming cells which secrete an EXTRACELLULAR MATRIX. HYDROXYAPATITE crystals are then deposited into the matrix to form bone.Bone and Bones: A specialized CONNECTIVE TISSUE that is the main constituent of the SKELETON. The principle cellular component of bone is comprised of OSTEOBLASTS; OSTEOCYTES; and OSTEOCLASTS, while FIBRILLAR COLLAGENS and hydroxyapatite crystals form the BONE MATRIX.CD40 Ligand: A membrane glycoprotein and differentiation antigen expressed on the surface of T-cells that binds to CD40 ANTIGENS on B-LYMPHOCYTES and induces their proliferation. Mutation of the gene for CD40 ligand is a cause of HYPER-IGM IMMUNODEFICIENCY SYNDROME, TYPE 1.Signal Transduction: The intracellular transfer of information (biological activation/inhibition) through a signal pathway. In each signal transduction system, an activation/inhibition signal from a biologically active molecule (hormone, neurotransmitter) is mediated via the coupling of a receptor/enzyme to a second messenger system or to an ion channel. Signal transduction plays an important role in activating cellular functions, cell differentiation, and cell proliferation. Examples of signal transduction systems are the GAMMA-AMINOBUTYRIC ACID-postsynaptic receptor-calcium ion channel system, the receptor-mediated T-cell activation pathway, and the receptor-mediated activation of phospholipases. Those coupled to membrane depolarization or intracellular release of calcium include the receptor-mediated activation of cytotoxic functions in granulocytes and the synaptic potentiation of protein kinase activation. Some signal transduction pathways may be part of larger signal transduction pathways; for example, protein kinase activation is part of the platelet activation signal pathway.Cell Differentiation: Progressive restriction of the developmental potential and increasing specialization of function that leads to the formation of specialized cells, tissues, and organs.Fas Ligand Protein: A transmembrane protein belonging to the tumor necrosis factor superfamily that was originally discovered on cells of the lymphoid-myeloid lineage, including activated T-LYMPHOCYTES and NATURAL KILLER CELLS. It plays an important role in immune homeostasis and cell-mediated toxicity by binding to the FAS RECEPTOR and triggering APOPTOSIS.Cells, Cultured: Cells propagated in vitro in special media conducive to their growth. Cultured cells are used to study developmental, morphologic, metabolic, physiologic, and genetic processes, among others.Protein Binding: The process in which substances, either endogenous or exogenous, bind to proteins, peptides, enzymes, protein precursors, or allied compounds. Specific protein-binding measures are often used as assays in diagnostic assessments.Binding Sites: The parts of a macromolecule that directly participate in its specific combination with another molecule.Models, Molecular: Models used experimentally or theoretically to study molecular shape, electronic properties, or interactions; includes analogous molecules, computer-generated graphics, and mechanical structures.Molecular Sequence Data: Descriptions of specific amino acid, carbohydrate, or nucleotide sequences which have appeared in the published literature and/or are deposited in and maintained by databanks such as GENBANK, European Molecular Biology Laboratory (EMBL), National Biomedical Research Foundation (NBRF), or other sequence repositories.Amino Acid Sequence: The order of amino acids as they occur in a polypeptide chain. This is referred to as the primary structure of proteins. It is of fundamental importance in determining PROTEIN CONFORMATION.TNF-Related Apoptosis-Inducing Ligand: A transmembrane-protein belonging to the TNF family of intercellular signaling proteins. It is a widely expressed ligand that activates APOPTOSIS by binding to TNF-RELATED APOPTOSIS-INDUCING LIGAND RECEPTORS. The membrane-bound form of the protein can be cleaved by specific CYSTEINE ENDOPEPTIDASES to form a soluble ligand form.CD30 Ligand: A membrane-bound tumor necrosis family member found primarily on activated T-LYMPHOCYTES that binds specifically to CD30 ANTIGEN. It may play a role in INFLAMMATION and immune regulation.